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The Rachel Maddow Show

News/Business. (2012)

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1080

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Mr. Romney 16, Mississippi 9, Romney 9, Dick Cheney 8, Chevron 6, Queens 6, Us 5, Bain 5, George W. Bush 5, Mitt Romney 5, Scott Brown 5, Melissa Harris Perry 5, Brown 3, Clinton 3, Washington 3, Iraq 3, Boston 3, Utah 3, New York City 2, Britain 2,
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  MSNBC    The Rachel Maddow Show    News/Business.  (2012)  

    July 14, 2012
    3:00 - 4:00am PDT  

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ght again. and main street found its fight again. and we, the locals, found delight again. that's the power of all of us. that's the power of all of us. that's the membership effect of american express. after two very bad weeks on the campaign trail, after not being able to catch a break at all, with this week in particular getting worse and worse day by day, today the mitt romney for president campaign did something they have never done with their normally rather interview shy candidate. it was a wall to wall blanket the networks blitz of interviews, he talked to abc, he talked to cbs, he talked to nbc, he talked to cnn, fox news, talked to -- no, mitt romney did not talk to msnbc. but in five hastily called interviews with everybody but
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msnbc, mitt romney repeated without variation the same thing over and over and over and over again today. he left bain capital in 1999 and left to run the olympics and anyone criticizing him for what bain did after that should apologize. he said specifically president obama should apologize because he, mitt romney was gone from bain in 1999. >> in february of 1999, i left bain capital. >> no involvement with the management of bain capital after february of 1999. >> i had no role whatsoever in the management of bain capital after february of 1999. i had had no role whatsoever in the management of bain capital after february of 1999. relinquished management authority and role in bain capital after february of 1999. the truth is i left any role in bain capital in february of
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1999. >> part of me was bummed i didn't get one of these mitt romney interviews when everybody else got one. i realize all he would have said i left bain capital in 1999. and i would say pardon? and i would say could i change the subject and he would say, i left bain capital in 1999. here's what matters, when he was at bain capital and when he left, really left. it's critical to mitt romney's viblt as a political candidate that he left bain capital in 1999 as he says and says. mitt romney's electability depends in part on that being true, which is why he says this all the time. >> i left that business in 1999 to help put the salt lake city olympics back on track. >> i worked for bain for 25 years and left that to go off and save the olympic games.
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>> i left massachusetts to run the olympics and left my organization. i was out there full-time. >> i left bain in 1999 and out there full-time, here no time. the romney campaign should print that on shirts and bumper sticks, it is essential to his campaign. it appears in plain english in the form mr. romney had to file to run for president, his financial disclosure form. mr. romney retired from bain capital on february 11th, 1999 to head the salt lake organizing dmt. since february of 1999, mr. romney has not had any active role with me bain capital entity or not been involved in the operations of any bain capital entity in any way. you do not have to be a lawyer to know what in any way means. the reason he keeps insisting he left bain capital a few weeks into 1999, he doesn't want to answer for anything bain capital
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did after that. he does not want to answer for the layoffs and bankruptcy at the company called dynamic details. mr. romney does not want to answer for the layoffs and closing of the steel mill that had to bail out the pension fund. the american pad and paper company or the way modus media and smt corp sent jobs overseas. mr. romney does not want to answer those things that happened at bain capital after he dog gone says he left that doggone company. now mitt romney has a problem, which is two-fold. first fold, reporters have been finding and publishing lots and lots of instances where mitt romney shows up in bain capital documents as being very much a part of that company after 1999. david corn and josh marshall at talking points memo have been publishing bain capital documents like this one from after 1999.
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this one from the year 2000, showing mitt romney as the sole shareholder and chief executive and president of bain capital. here's one from the following year, from 2001, same thing. bain capital telling federal authorities that mitt romney owns bain is is the boss. the boston globe built on that reporting finding financial disclosure forms that list him as the 100% sole owner of bain capital in 2002. s the stories started breaking, the response from mr. romney has been that these documents that show his name on them, from bain capital after 1999, these documents don't matter. these are just legal mumbo jumbo, even though i signed these documents i'm engaging in serving as the sole stockholder of the firm.
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that's just a technicality, i don't mean it, it's not really true. if you were a rich investment manager like me, you would understand. >> really? you would understand in your heart. today mr. romney elaborated on his defense by saying all of these forms, names being on all of these forms well after 1999, all of these forms, what they meant was he was the owner but he was not as the owner paying attention to these things he owned. he was not paying attention to anything at bain and steering anything and not going to meetings and making decisions. he was not doing anything at bain. he was still owning it. if that's true, that means mr. romney wants us to believe -- look at this. look. he wants us to believe he got paid a lot for doing absolutely nothing. he made $100,000 in 2001 and again in 2002 for the job of doing absolutely nothing at bain capital, nothing at all.
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that 100,000 salary, not the return from an investment or somebody paying back a loan. that is mitt romney making $100,000 for a job that he insists he did not do. are there any more of those jobs available where you get paid $100,000 to do nothing, to swear you are doing absolutely nothing? are these jobs available if your name is not mitt romney, no, maybe, call me? now mitt romney has a further problem beyond that. when he ran for governor of massachusetts in 2002, mr. romney gave sworn testimony about being a legal resident of massachusetts and therefore being eligible to run for governor. i lived in massachusetts at the time and still do and remember people having a little consternation over this guy that lived in utah would be governor of massachusetts. he testified actually he didn't live in utah and still lived in massachusetts. even though she was busy running the olympics in utah he traveled
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to massachusetts for both personal reasons and for business reasons. business reasons? he specifically mentioned coming back for board meetings in 2002, apparently board meetings for a company that bain had a stake in. he swore then he was coming back to massachusetts to go to board meetings and says now he was doing nothing, nothing at all related to bain after 1999. so mitt romney says he was not there at bain. he also says he was there. it all depends on who's asking and why. this year when republicans are trying to pick a republican nominee to run against president obama, mr. romney's opponents tried to nail him on this, he should release his tax returns and clear up this stuff, didn't go anywhere in the primaries. the first person who realized mitt romney was struggling with this, that he was trying to make
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people believe two opposite things at the same time, that he wanted to ee vat responsibility for what happened at his firm while still getting credit for being at his firm. first person who realized that was his opponent in the massachusetts governor's race. >> one of the other companies u.s. own, mitt, it was reported in the boston herald that you said, if i had to do it all over again, i would have done things differently when you cut people's health care benefits and cut their pension benefits and close the plant. it has become known that your company made $102 million in profits from the sale of that company, from dismantling that company. my question to you is, couldn't you have made $80 million instead $102 million and helped keep people in their health care benefits longer or extend the pension benefits. >> at the olympics at the time those things occurred.
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>> still signing documents as ceo of the company while you were away. in the summer of 2001 you made a statement in the paper that in the summer of 2001, you were finally relinquishing 100% control of your position within bain. so apparently you hadn't relinquished that beforehand. >> joining us now is shannon o'brien, mitt romney's opponent in the race for governor. she is the former state treasurer and member of the statehouse and senate. it's nice to have you here. >> very nice to meet you and nice to meet a neighbor from north hampton, i lived in easton. >> very good. >> looking back at that debate footage, as the first person to press mitt romney in that campaign about what happened at bain capital and whether he was responsible for bain capital's actions, are you surprised to see it coming up again now? is this the same issue you were
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confronting him with? >> it is the same issue and he criticized me deeply for having done something like that, having dain to question his truthfulness and it's taken ten years to figure out that actually maybe he wasn't telling the truth. >> obviously the obama campaign has been going after mr. romney for the apparent conflicts in the record. have you been in contact with the obama campaign. are they interested in what you know or following your lead from what you raised with him a decade ago? >> i certainly think a lot of record created in 2002 the obama people are looking at. i guess you've had the videotape of one of our earlier debates from 2002. i really think that after ten years, it's really making sure that you hold someone accountable for the statements that they make. you know, former governor romney has demonstrated a pattern of not being completely transparent
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about his financial dealings. on the one hand he says that the reason he should be the president of the united states is because he's a job creator and the reason we should believe he is a job creator because of his fantastic track record at bain. then when pressed about bankruptcies and lost jobs, he doesn't want anything to do with that. i think we were able to uncover that in 2002 and it's just looking at the inconsistencies, not only in 2002, but you know, in his last race and in this race, just making sure that he's being truthful and consistent in the message that he's pressing for making his case to the people in the united states. >> i have to say, i have been marinading in these various documents for a few days now since they started coming out trying to figure out what's important and what might really just be legal mumbo jumbo and it sticks out for me that he was being paid $100,000, both in 2001 and 2002, by bain, not
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because of an investment, but as a salary for being an executive. and if he is simultaneously claiming he did nothing, he did absolutely nothing and that he was paid $100,000 for being an executive, it seems to any one of these things cannot stand. this has to fall apart, if only on that point. is that, that detail about him getting pay $100,000 for each of those years, did you know that at the time? >> i think that was part of his statement of financial interest when he was in the campaign and i think that's one of the reasons we pressed him on this issue in 2002. and i actually probably believe that given the time he was taking to run the olympics before he came back to massachusetts to run, probably the day to day operations of a business of the size and magnitude of bain he probably wasn't doing. what happens in these private investment companies, in essence when you make an investment, you get seats on the board. flz a reason you get seats on
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the board because you're base bei ically watching the decisions they are making and making sure they are following good corporate governance and protecting the investment you've made. i've actually sat on a number of different corporate boards, including some financial institutions and i understand that even if you're not involved in the day to day operations, it's that board work that also becomes very important. so he probably was getting paid for the board involvement that he was continuing to maintain while he was still running the olympics, that's my reading from all of the stories that i've seen in the paper. >> having him say so black and white today over and over and over again and all of those network interviews, i was doing nothing, nothing, then see him getting paid for definitely doing something. >> but rachel, as someone who sat on a board, it's interesting board members to be good board members and we get told this by management all the time, there's a bright line between what
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management does and a board does. but what a board does is very important, frankly not only to the governance of the company, the direction they are taking and major decisions they are taking. even though you may not be involved in the day to day management of bain or the companies you discussed before i came on, you're certainly involved in the direction and the major decisions that are taking place. so i think it's somewhat disingenuous to say he wasn't involved if he is acknowledging he it did do board work as a result of his involvement on behalf of bain's investment. >> shannon o'brien, the 2002 democratic massachusetts gubernatorial nominee who ran against mitt romney. thanks for your insight. this rabbit hole is yet deeper but you've helped us figure out some. >> one of the former partners, ed conard is going to be chris
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hayes guest tomorrow. that's going to be really good. you should watch that. if you're not going to be up that early, dvr it. okay. lots still ahead, including a popcorn worthy spy ending tonight. erica's favorite cereal? oh, you're good! hey, did you know that honey nut cheerios is... oh you too! ooh, hey america's favorite cereal is... honey nut cheerios ok then off to iceland! in every way, shape, and form. it's my dream vehicle. on a day to day basis, i am not using gas. my round trip is approximately 40 miles to work. head on home, stop at the grocery store, whatever else that i need to do -- still don't have to use gas. i'm never at the gas station unless i want some coffee. it's the best thing ever. as a matter of fact, i'm taking my savings so that i can go to hawaii. ♪
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the twenty billion dollars bp committed has helped fund economic and environmental recovery. long-term, bp's made a five hundred million dollar commitment to support scientists studying the environment. and the gulf is open for business - the beaches are beautiful, the seafood is delicious. last year, many areas even reported record tourism seasons. the progress continues... but that doesn't mean our job is done. we're still committed to seeing this through. we have breaking news out of mississippi. we have been following this story closely. as you know, the state's only abortion clinic, only one abortion clinic in mississippi
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and it's been threatened with closure by a new law in mississippi. a new law that specifically targets new regulations only at abortion providers. new rules designed to be impossible for clinics to comply with, it seems. seems pretty clear it's designed to shut them down. the proponents of the law said that's what they were trying to do with the law. in this case, the law required all abortion clinics to have admitting privileges. at a local hospital, something the primary providers at the only mississippi clinic do not have. something that mississippi's republican governor knew they did not have when they signed that bill into law in april. >> i think it's historic that today you see the first step in a movement, i believe, to do what we campaigned on, to say we're going to try to end abortion in mississippi. >> they admitted they wanted to shut down all access to abortion in mississippi. the goal of mississippi lawmakers in passing the new targeted regulations was to shut down the state's only clinic. the clinic as we have been reporting here, sued in federal court to block the law, to keep
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themselves open. tonight, a federal judge has issued a ruling that partially grants the clinic's request. the judge did not block the law itself. he ruled tonight that the new law will be allowed to take effect in mississippi, but he's blocking the state from enforcing the law's penalties as long as the clinic is trying to comply with the new law. bottom line, as yet unseen. it seems the state is still trying to shut down the last clinic in the state, but they will not be allowed to take action against the clinic to insure that, alt least now. here's is how the clinic's owner is reacting to the ruling tonight. >> we're pretty happy. this is -- this was our major concern, whether or not we could be criminally or civilly prosecuted. as you know, we have done everything we can to comply with this law. we've put in all of our applications. we're calling the hospitals weekly. but everything is out of our hands now, and into the hands of the hospital. so we'll be able to operate
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without fear of either being criminally or civilly prosecuted which is a major, major relief. i think that the judge was clear that we can come back at any time if we need to. i'm hoping that we're going to be effective and able to get the privileges. i would certainly like to extend an invitation to governor bryant and all of the officials who have been real concerned about this, maybe they can help us out and make some calls to the hospitals to see if they could, you know, hasten the process. otherwise, you know, we plan on seeing it through. >> so as of tonight, a bit of a reprieve. the law that's designed to end abortion in mississippi has been allowed to stay on the books, but access to abortion will not be ended in mississippi just yet. center for reproductive rights responding saying they will remain vigilant in their fight to make sure they're not subject
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to penalties that will force the doors to close and deprive women of their constitutionally protected rights. the clinic's owner saying if she's not able to comply with the law, she'll continue to fight it in court. we'll continue to watch it closely because mississippi is still trying its damnedest to become the first state in the country to ban abortion with or without overturning roe v. wade. no you don't, honey. yes, you do! don't! i've washed a few cupcake tins in my day... oh, so you're a tin expert now. whoa nelly! hi, kitchen counselor here. he's actually right... with cascade complete. see cascade complete pacs work like thousands of micro-scrubbing brushes to help power away tough foods even in corners and edges. so, i was right, right? i've gotta run. more dishwasher brands in north america recommend cascade. constipated? phillips' caplets use magnesium, an ingredient that works more naturally with your colon
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photos of this guy, the altair voyager. it's a chevron oil tanker that used to be very famous. until the george w. bush administration took office in 2001, the altair voyager was caed the condoleezza rice. dr. rice was a long time board member of chevron when george w. bush hired her to be the national security adviser. she had a tanker named after her. yeah, the former oil executive president picked the ceo of halliburton to be vice president and the board member of a chevron who had a tanker named after her to be national security advicer. it was a different time. pity poor chevron because when the bush administration took office, chevron faced the prospect of having one of its oil tankers floating around the middle east or off the coast of nigeria or something with the american national security adviser's name painted in big letters on the side of their
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tanker. that's awkward. that was awkward even before iraq. so chevron decided in 2001 they would change the name of the condoleezza rice. it would no longer be the condoleezza rice, it would instead being the altair voyager, which is the name of a star, a noncontroversial star. now the woman who once had her name painted or so it would stop so it with stop be a floating symbol of the bush campaign is now for a man who hopes that name stands for something else. melissa harris perry joins us next. ♪
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don't release the tax returns, getting booed at the naacp. the members of rom calm have been back on their heels all week long. here is how team rom com handled just the last 24-hour news cycle. this right here, i can't make it look any better than that. this right here appears to be the only picture that exists of mitt romney's high profile fund-raiser in wyoming last night with former vice president dick cheney. that's it, a picture of people's backs taken from a distance from behind a pole, maybe a tree. that's the only photo. the romney team was so nervous that their candidate would be photographed alongside dick cheney, mr. 13% approval rating, that they banned tv cameras from covering the event. the l.a. times reports a pool of reporters was allowed in, but media photos of romney and cheney together were not permitted. not only were they banned from photographing romney and cheney together, they weren't even allowed to eyewitness the two
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men standing together. quote, when mr. romney arrived at the reception, he greeted mr. cheney with a handshake and his wife lynn with a kiss, but reporters were promptly escorted out by the campaign. later in the evening, quote, once at mr. cheney's private residence, a reporter within earshot of mr. romney's remarks, heard mr. romney invoke mr. bush but was not able to make out the context and was again escorted away by a campaign staffer. the romney campaign went to great length to allow there to be a dick cheney appearance last night while also squel ching evidence they had had anything to do with each other. and in the same news cycle, in that same news cycle, somebody in romney land had the genius idea of floating as mr. romney's vice presidential nominee, the highest profile person from the
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bush/cheney administration who was not george bush or dick cheney. so they're getting new communications in over at romneyland. seems like a good idea. with or without these, i'm sure excellent new communications folks coming in to try to tune up the shop at rom com, it's going to be hard for them to run from the real connections between mr. romney's campaign and the last republican presidency. i mean, even if mitt romney has so far managed to avoid being seen next to george w. bush, there are now a bunch of statements on the record of him and dick cheney making proverbial googly eyes at each other. romney saying dick cheney is a man of wisdom and judgment, somebody he would model his own vice presidential pick after. dick cheney saying last night, when i think of the kind of individual i want in the oval office, that man is mitt romney. mitt romney then returning the favor, saying of dick cheney
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last night, quote, that's quite a man. quite a leader. 17 of mitt romney's 24 foreign policy advisers are people who served in the bush/cheney administration. when joe biden accused the romney campaign of being laden with bush/cheney guys, they conference call to rebut that charge was led by two bush/cheney foreign policy guys. on matters of policy in terms of what they're in favor of, they're on the same page even on simple issues like the wars. cheney said it was a great mistake, in his words, it was tragic to end the war in iraq. and like dick cheney, he also does not want an end to the afghanistan war. i understand some of what they might think is the appeal of floating condoleezza rice as mitt romney's vice president, particularly since it's not about bain capital and that makes it a comparatively good topic of conversation today. did they not realize that putting condoleezza rise into
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today's news make them think about all of the connections between the bush and romney administrations. is condoleezza rice supposed to be so blindingly interesting that we don't remember why she is famous? maybe it was an intentional thing. maybe the romney campaign is getting closer to allowing the photos, right? to say publicly that a mitt romney presidency might be a third term of bush/cheney and what about it? joining us, melissa harris perry. a woman named melissa harris perry. great to have you here. thank you. >> thanks. >> which is your dream ticket. mitt romney condoleezza rice or mitt romney liz cheney? >> it's romney/rice? >> why? >> well, romney rice is fun to say. one, i like the idea of a condi rice/joe biden debate. it's a debate about folks who
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have foreign policy conversation about the two big issues that have dominated our foreign policy scene, afghanistan and iraq. and i would like to hear condoleezza rice talk about how she would defend that, particularly in a political circumstance because she hasn't had to do that. i would love that debate. the other piece of it is i just -- i am ready for an america with an african-american woman political scientist who used to be provost of a university as a vice presidential candidate. it makes me happy. >> she was secretary of state, national security adviser. she's definitely got chops. i was an attendee of the university when she was the provost there. if it was an audition for something, i don't think i would have recommended her. the idea of liz cheney and mitt romney has long been my favorite matchup because i want to call the question, i want to call the question on whether or not the current republican party is an
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inherited or the bush/cheney legacy or whether something has changed. if something has changed, what has changed because there's this lacuna to use a favorite term of condoleezza rice between what they are allowed -- what we know happened in the bush/cheney era and what republicans explain about what they do different. there's this gap. >> part of this is interesting like we can't stand next to lynn or dick cheney, we're not going to say george w. bush's name in ear shot of a reporter is this challenge of what the republican party currently is. we have talked about it in the primary season about the kind of moral, southern, right-wing base, and how is a relatively moderate rich guy going to sort of pull along those populous right wingers, but the real challenge, i think is not just showing those up, that's part of it, but the other real challenge is how do we manage the fact that the last republican president was not ronald reagan. it was george w. bush. there's a real record of
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republican decisions and those are all decisions from tax policy to the reduction of a social safety net to foreign policy that looks precisely like the record that mitt romney wants to run on. >> are we getting close to a point where romney starts pivoting to defending bush/cheney w all of the advisers, the dick cheney thing, the float of the condoleezza rice thing, which i can't say is from the romney campaign, are they getting close to saying that the bush cheney years were good years? >> i don't think 13% approval for dick cheney -- >> that's where he was when he left office. >> we saw the bumper stickers, fairly early on in the obama administration, do you miss me yet? i think the re-sounding -- >> everybody is like, no. >> no, in fact, no. >> no, thanks for asking. >> exactly. >> melissa harris perry, thank you for being here.
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the new melissa harris perry show is weekends 10:00 a.m. >> the man turning out the be the strangest senator in washington is still refusing to do an interview on this show, but he's making strange news. strange news from senator mcstrangy strange. [ female announcer ] letting her home be turned into a training facility? ♪ this olympian's mom has been doing it for years. she's got bounty. in this lab demo, one sheet of new bounty leaves this surface cleaner than two sheets of the leading ordinary brand. bounty has trap and lock technology to soak up big spills and lock them in. let the spills begin. p&g. proud sponsor of the olympic games.
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♪ because every girl could use a little variety. ♪ enjoy special k®, in 10 delicious flavors. so many possibilities. what will you gain when you lose? quick correction, i said ed conard is going to be on chris hayes's show this weekend, on tomorrow's show. i was wrong. it is going on on sunday's show. i'm very sorry about that. what it means is you have to tune in tomorrow for what will surely be an excellent show, but you need to tune in again on sunday if you want to see his interview with romney's former bain partner. that interview is sunday, not saturday. we'll be right back and i have to advise you you're going to
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need our popcorn ready for our end of the show special spy movie tonight.
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last time we checked in on senator scott brown of massachusetts, he was trying to recover from what turned out to be a whole series of xrag races about the high level meetings he has been taking as the junior senator from massachusetts. >> i have been discussing issues, meeting on issues in secret meetings with kings and
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queens and prime ministers and business leaders and military leaders, talking, voting, working on issues every single day. >> secret meetings with kings and queens. that was the strange claim scott brown made in a radio interview last month. a strange claim that as you might have guessed was not strictly speaking accurate. his spokesman attempting to clarify the comments to the "washington post" by saying, senator brown was speaking generally about private meetings he has had with foreign and domestic leaders. private meetings not secret meetings? but kings and queens? no, next clarification, he misspoke when he said kings and queens. the secret meetings with kings and queens thing did not come in a spontaneous moment of day dreaming like abandon. it turns out his fantastic secret meetings with kings and queens is something he talks
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about a lot, which the massachusetts democratic party had made tape of and which they proceeding to gleefully unleash to the interwebs complete with a sound track from abba. >> meetings with kings and queens. world leaders and business leaders, kings and queens. >> from the kings and queens. >> if you thought that the humiliation of seeing your bizarre xag bragss should be enough to deter you from further embarrassing exaggeration on the campaign trail, you're not scott brown. don't forget, this is also the guy who said he saw the photos of dead osama bin laden. >> i have seen the pick, he's definitely dead, and if there's any conspiracy theories out there, you should put them to rest, okay? >> no, scott brown, no. you did not see a picture of dead bin laden. you saw the same hoax picture on the internet everyone saw, only
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you thought it was real, and you told everybody it was real so you would seem important, a big important senator that gets shown big important things regular people don't get to see. his staff later had to clarify that one as well. now he's got a new one. >> i can name a litany of democratic sponsored bills that never would have passed if it wasn't for me. the president had called me and the vice president calls me and secretary clinton calls asking for my vote all the time. >> my phone will just not stop ringing. the president, and vice president and hillary is calling and calling and calling. the inevitable clarification coming by way of the boston globe today, quoting the globe ? reality, senator brown's staff said he has spoken by phone with hillary clinton just twice in his whole senate career. most recently over a year ago on july 5th, 2011. the other call occurred in december of 2011.
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>> senator clinton calls asking for my vote all the time. >> by all the time, he means twice ever. the last time more than a year ago. and when he says the vice president calls him, senator brown's staff now clarifying what he actually means is he had a phone call, one with the vice president, and that was a year and a half ago. presumably scott brown did not clarify these remarks himself because he was in a very important secret meeting with kings and queens looking at bin laden pictures he found on the internet that he swears are real. this is new york state. we built the first railway, the first trade route to the west, the greatest empires. then, some said, we lost our edge. well today, there's a new new york state. one that's working to attract businesses and create jobs.
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a place where innovation meets determination... and businesses lead the world. the new new york works for business. find out how it can work for yours at thenewny.com.
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if we took the nissan altima and reimagined nearly everything in it? gave it greater horsepower and best in class 38 mpg highway... ...advanced headlights... ...and zero gravity seats? yeah, that would be cool. ♪ introducing the completely reimagined nissan altima. it's our most innovative altima ever. nissan. innovation that excites. ♪ because it's friday and we love you, here's your real life spy story, if you're watching on the podcast, now is a good time to hit pause and get popcorn or near beer and come back.
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this is nuts. okay, ready? here goes, georgy markoff, defected from bull gar ya to england and went from the soviet union and the communist overlorded tried to figure out how to assassinate him. while waiting for a bus in london, he felt a little jab in the leg, scrape or something, he turned around and saw a man picking up an umbrella like this. the man apologized for bumping into him and hopped into a cab. while this is what the umbrella looked like on the inside. this is what it looked like on the inside, a trigger, release catch and spring and gas cylinder and barrel and yes a poison pellet. it was rigged as a tiny concealed gun to fire that poison pellet out of the tip of the umbrella.
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a few days after he was accidentally jabbed with the umbrella, he died, it contained ricin, derived from castor beans, we don't know exactly who killed georgemarkoff, who carried it out. after the soviet union fell, a former intelligence chief was sentenced to a year and a half in jail for destroying documents related to that assassination, a former deputy interior minister was called to testify about the destruction of documents but committed suicide instead. a third guy who ran the assassination plot died in a mysterious and unexplained car accident. years later the guardian newspaper in britain reported when the bulgarian government collapsed, a stack of those special umbrellas was found in the interior ministry. because this kind of thing is the stuff of spy novels, it can be hard to get your head around the fact it does happen in real
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life sometimes. we think our government targeted killings by drone aircraft is a dramatic thing, but how about by means of an umbrella gun or cup of nuclear tea that turns its victim bright blue before it kills. a russian spy like george markoff, defected to britain and consulted with mi 5 and 6, the british equivalent of the fbi and cia. in the fall of 2006, he met with men when he believed to be former russian spies like himself. they met and had tea together and later that day, live yenco became very, very ill. shortly speaking, his hair fell out and organs failed and he was hospitalized and ultimately he turned blue. within a few weeks he was dead. what killed him was a rare and very radioactive material. some very small amount of it was
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dropped in his tea at that meeting with the other former spies. he had to be buried in a coffin lined with lead. his body was quite radioactive. the britts traced it to a nuclear power plant in russia. when the brits tried to extradite a suspect from russia, the russians declined. so the mystery who called him was never solved. his death is sometimes called the first death by nuclear terrorism, some other nonstate actor using radioactive materials to kill someone. he was the first, at least they used to say, now there are allegations there may have been another. in late 2004, the president of the palestinian authority, arafat became ill, a few weeks later he died. doctors said it was caused by a massive stroke and blood condition that couldn't be explained. the sudden illness that nondiagnosis and political
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stakes of him dying, it's not surprising it has long been the subject of more or less wild conspiracy theories, everything from him dying of aides to being deliberately affected with hiv to cause aids. at the heart of most conspiracies was the allegation that israel was responsible for killing him. >> a nephew of late palestinian president arafat said his uncle may have died an unnatural death. many palestinians believe arafat was poisoned. israel denies that claim. >> did not put a stop to the rumors, but how he died remains a source of rumor. a journalist got hold of the medical report from doctors who treated him in france until he died and report said the doctors looked for evidence of the most common poisons but didn't find that evidence. there were two investigations by the palestinians that turned up nothing in terms of cause of death, no evidence of a
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conspiracy or poisoning except for rumor and suspicion for almost eight years. until now, the news channel al gentleman zeer ra has contained their investigation into the death based in part in the widow giving the late medical files, including some of the clothes he wore at the end of his life and a toothbrush. the journalist sent those items to a lab in switzerland to be tested for all sorts of things. they looked for heavy metal and common poisons, did not find any. you don't test a person for poison generically. after looking for common poisons they looked for something rare, radioactive element, which they found. they reportedly found on arafat's clothes and toothbrush, pa lone yum 210, the same that killed the russian ex-spy in london two years after arafat
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died. here's why the theory is still seen as wobbly, the french hospital where he was treated, never tested him for it so we don't know if he was exposed to it. it's on his belongings sent to this swiss lab. we know that it degrades quekly, half like of over four months. why would they be able to find it in his clothes in high concentrations eight years after he died? if there was plenty on his belongi belongings, why didn't it make his widow sick as well? maybe it was planted on his belongings after he died. maybe, what's the next step? what would you do from here? you dig him up. seriously, they are going to dig him up. his widow has asked the palestinian authority to exhume her late husband's body to test it to see whether or not he was assassinated that way. he's buried in a mausoleum where the new